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Re: A tough question...or is it?


By your definition, virtually every mega-business in the country - big pharma, agri-business, the entire fossil fuel industry, etc., etc., is a hobby. That makes no sense. No field today stands on its own. Every business is a result of conscious choices made by government - to favor some industries over others via tax breaks, policy, etc. Dr. Holtz is correct. The human condition requires more than just business. In the case of dinosaurs and paleontology, the sense of wonder and amazement they generate is demonstrated daily by the huge and enthusiastic crowds in the halls of our natural history museums. I speak as an AMNH Tour Guide who witnesses this phenomenon routinely.

Jerrold Alpern

----- Original Message ----- From: "Thomas R. Holtz, Jr." <tholtz@umd.edu>
To: <wdm1949@hotmail.com>
Cc: <augustoharo@gmail.com>; "DML" <dinosaur@usc.edu>
Sent: Monday, July 29, 2013 4:42 PM
Subject: RE: A tough question...or is it?

On Mon, July 29, 2013 2:47 pm, dale mcinnes wrote:
Augusto ..

Palaeontology IS a hobby .. albeit .. a professional hobby
run by professionally skilled researchers, artists, illustrators,
technicians. Technically .. any field that does not stand on its
own [financially or management wise] and needs to be propped up by
gov't mamagement/funding .. IS a hobby.

I'm switching this around:

Any fully sustainable task such as business is just routine maintenance
for society. Science, art, and so forth ARE the human condition: they are
what makes living worthwhile (rather than simple persistence for the sake
of persistence).

Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
Email: tholtz@umd.edu Phone: 301-405-4084
Office: Centreville 1216
Senior Lecturer, Vertebrate Paleontology
Dept. of Geology, University of Maryland
Fax: 301-314-9661

Faculty Director, Science & Global Change Program, College Park Scholars
Fax: 301-314-9843

Mailing Address: Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
Department of Geology
Building 237, Room 1117
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742 USA